Recently, we’ve been reporting on rumors that strange but awesome actor Benicio Del Toro was being pursued by J.J. Abrams to play the villain in the upcoming sequel to his Star Trek reboot. Those rumors were coming from multiple sources and seemed to be completely legit. Alongside that, we’ve also been completely irresponsibly speculating that the villain Del Toro was being asked to play was Khan, the genetically engineered tyrant who served as the crew’s nemesis in the previous film, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. This was based on nothing other than Del Toro’s general swarthiness and how great he would be at stepping into the scantily clad shoes of Ricardo Montalban, and wasn’t meant to be taken seriously. Today, however, there is news on both of these fronts.
Vulture is reporting that the deal with Del Toro is dead. Reportedly, as of last Wednesday, both sides decided that they couldn’t agree on money and parted ways. So, given that shooting for the film is scheduled to start in January, that gives Abrams a window of only a few weeks to find someone else to step into the role. A role that there is new news about.
In the same Vulture article, they are claiming that they have heard from “highly placed sources” that despite Abrams’s comments to the contrary, the villain for this new Trek is indeed going to be Khan Noonien Singh. Speculation is that when Abrams told Hitfix that it was “not true” that Del Toro was playing Khan, he was being cheeky. He didn’t mean that Khan wasn’t the villain, he meant that Del Toro wouldn’t be the actor. Oh, what a tangled web we weave when first we something, something.
So, this leaves us with some questions. How do you feel about Khan being used again as a villain for a Trek movie? Is this a welcome return to what works, or would you rather see them go in a less explored direction? And with Del Toro out of the picture, who can Abrams bring in that will get the job done? I think anybody who recently watched The Skin I Live In would agree that Antonio Banderas could definitely pull it off, but are there any off the beaten path choices?